7 Top Consulting Trends in 2023

 A consultant sits at a desk and advises two other business professionals.
A consultant sits at a desk and advises two other business professionals.

Business consulting trends in 2023 indicate that organizational management is a rapidly evolving sector. The pandemic accelerated this evolution, causing disruptions that compelled firms to be nimble and willing to adjust in unplanned ways. But the pandemic also demonstrated that the most successful firms were the ones that embraced innovative trends and integrated them into their strategy. This approach is important to take in 2023, as new innovative trends emerge and subsequent challenges arise. 

Knowing the latest industry trends is essential for any business consultant to provide the most innovative and effective solutions for their clients. MBA programs with specializations in organizational consulting can prepare students for the exciting challenges of a career in this field.

Organizational management consultants work in both the public and private sectors and often specialize in certain areas such as healthcare, manufacturing or financial services. They provide advisory and implementation services to a company’s management to improve business strategy, performance and/or operations. These duties provide a foundation that can adapt to consulting trends in a fluid, effective manner.

What are Recent Trends in Business Consulting?

In 2020, the U.S. consultant market size hit $64.4 billion, according to data generated by Statista. Roughly $27 billion of this was generated by the industry’s “Big Four” — PwC, Deloitte, EY and KPMG. While the quartet does take up a healthy chunk of market share due in part to their financial consulting services, that still leaves plenty of competitive space for small- to medium-sized firms to thrive. Those that rise to the top in this sector should have a complete understanding of the industry’s pulse and how it’s being driven by market trends. 

There are several trends management consulting professionals must be cognizant of in 2023. The primary trends to know about include the following:

1. Game-Changing Technology

The growing number of businesses seeking to increase their digital footprint has increased the demand for consultants. Digital technologies can forge close connections between businesses and stakeholders like never before. This connection works both ways as potential stakeholders come to the table with an unprecedented level of understanding about what a firm can offer. 

New technology is also responsible for the commoditization of services consulting firms used to provide and depend on as major profit sources. Today’s top consultants are aware of the latest technology disrupting their space, and they’re able to innovate and provide value to their clients even if services become automated. Automation is also replacing ‘back-office’ tasks that consultants used to be responsible for managing. This helps reduce costs and improves customer experience.

An increase in remote work will also continue to propel the demand for cloud-based capabilities. Consultancies will expand their use of cloud technologies and services to assist with a variety of processes, such as mergers and acquisitions, investments and more. 

2. Multi-Sourcing

Historically, businesses purchased the services of one consulting firm. Now it’s increasingly common for clients to bring on multiple firms with niche specialties and expect them to work together on meeting project objectives.

3. Remote Work

What became a necessity during the pandemic has become a bona fide element to success. The switch to full-time or hybridized work has done more than change how business may be done. The isolated, tech-driven nature tends to strip away the peripheral fluff of business consulting and place a further emphasis on the tasks at hand. Consultants that embrace the shifting dynamics associated with these environments can gain an advantage over those that do not.

4. Talent Management

Consulting firms used to nurture top talent over a long period. With the combination of skilled freelancers and gig economy workers penetrating the market with contract-based employment structures, firms need to re-evaluate their approach to attracting and retaining high-quality talent who possess the niche skills needed by the firm’s clients. Constantly evolving technologies and techniques put even more pressure on consulting firms to keep pace and remain competitive.

5. Upskilling and Reskilling

The influx of new technologies and approaches to business requires consultants to stay on the cutting edge. By proactively developing and refining skills that align with new consulting trends, innovations and processes, managing consultant firms can maintain relevance at a high level. 

6. Performance-Based Billing<

Out with the old ‘time and materials’ billing structure and in with pricing based on agreed-upon outcomes and value received in the form of operational improvements and strategy. There’s also pressure on consulting firms to lower their prices due to increased competition, globalization, commoditization and automation.

7. Analytics

The growing sophistication behind data collection, analysis, interpretation and storage through technological innovation has made data analytics an integral part of any effective business strategy. Management consulting firms must keep abreast of the analytics field as it evolves through new data science strategies and ideas. Doing so will put them in a prime position to gather and glean insights that can optimize an organization’s growth and stability strategies.

Stepping into a Bright Career 

Recent trends in consulting lend to a rewarding career for individuals who thrive on working within dynamic market conditions and adapt to new technologies and work philosophies. The job outlook for organizational management consultants is expected to grow 11% faster than the average for all other occupations between 2021 and 2031.

Organizational management consultants with experience and advanced educational qualifications often have stronger career opportunities, and niche expertise can offer job seekers a competitive edge and flexibility within the context of contemporary consulting trends.

Spring Arbor University’s online MBA with a specialization in organizational consulting features courses such as:

  • Workplace Learning and Professional Development
  • Strategic Leadership
  • Organizational Consulting

These courses and others educate SAU students to recognize, adapt and innovate in response to emerging trends within the business consulting industry. SAU’s organizational management courses also incorporate behavioral science and organizational leadership principles that students can apply to consulting strategies that help businesses navigate and thrive in changing market conditions.

With a robust academic curriculum grounded in strong Christian principles, students are prepared for a career in the rapidly evolving consulting industry and can emerge as ethical leaders in business. Learn more about how to become a consulting professional with SAU. 

Recommended Readings

Christian Entrepreneurship: Tips for Starting a Christian Business

MBA Specialization: Which Is Best for You?

Online MBA: Common FAQs Answered


California Business Journal, “Data Analytics Consulting and How It Can Make Your Business More Profitable”

Global 1 Consulting, “A Look at 5 Consulting Trends in 2022!”

Hinge, “Top 5 Business Challenges for Management Consulting Firms”

Investopedia, “What Are the Big 4 Accounting Firms? Definition and Critique”

LinkedIn, “Management Consulting Trends to Change in 2023”

LinkedIn, “Remote or Face-to-Face: Why the Future of Consulting Work Will be a Hybrid”

Praxie, “How Coronavirus is Disrupting the $250 Billion Consulting Sector”

Statista, Size of the Consulting Market in the United States from 2015 to 2020

U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Management Analysts